Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Cessna 150J, N117TS: Incident occurred May 22, 2021 in Harrisburg, Cabarrus County, North Carolina

Federal Aviation Administration / Flight Standards District Office; Charlotte, North Carolina

Aircraft experienced engine issues and landed in a field.  

Victory Lane Aviation LLC


Date: 22-MAY-21
Time: 16:49:00Z
Regis#: N117TS
Aircraft Make: CESSNA
Aircraft Model: 150
Event Type: INCIDENT
Highest Injury: NONE
Aircraft Missing: No
Damage: UNKNOWN
Activity: INSTRUCTION
Flight Phase: EN ROUTE (ENR)
Operation: 91
City: HARRISBURG
State: NORTH CAROLINA


18 comments:

  1. This was a student pilot that ran out of fuel. He claims it was burning an abnormal rate, but that is unlikely and not yet confirmed.

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    Replies
    1. What makes it unlikely? Did you investigate?

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    2. Highly unlikely, upon inspection aircraft had zero signs of any issues with engine or fuel system.

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    3. Stop giving this guy praise. didn't check his fuel prior to departure and ran it out of fuel. Upon inspection aircraft had zero signs of any issues with engine or fuel system.

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  2. 22.5 gallons useable fuel. 2 hour flight to Florence and back. Forget to lean it out a cruise.......

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    1. that math wouldn't add up though.

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    2. BS! Running out of fuel does not cause the engine to stop windmilling.

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    3. But low airspeed will cause the prop to stop windmilling. What airspeed that happens at is a function of prop pitch and length, engine compression, reduction ratio etc. When you run out of fuel, your prop *will* eventually stop windmilling unless you maintain a high descent rate to keep your speed up.

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  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x3NTfiW17QA

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  4. Student did a good job landing off field and not harming himself or the airplane. The airplane is active and back in the air. A good outcome.

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  5. If you stop and enlarge the video, you can see both fuel gauges are on empty,hard to tell where the mixture control position was.

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    Replies
    1. The gauges could be showing empty but can have sufficient fuel.

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  6. Good pick for a landing zone, under high stress he did a great job. Airspeed management and communications were good as well. Outcome is what counts.
    As a CFII, ATP I’d suggest this .. don’t fool with the transponder until you have the problem sorted, that is, fly the airplane and determine the issue. Next, if no engine, be certain and committed to the landing zone. Only after, then set 7700 and do your final communications. Those precious seconds where your attention is diverted from being the pilot to being heads down could be exactly what determines a successful outcome.
    This especially holds true on low altitude scenarios (take off, approach) where virtually every second counts.
    Last point here for student pilots. When I instructed students as a CFI, I preached the importance of altitude. Knowing the nearest airstrip and having the altitude to glide to it safely. I taught to use the generous 10 to 1 glide, and using that ratio to plan the route. Maybe not the most direct route, maybe higher than typical. Two students had engine failures later in their piloting and both thanked me for the rule. One said,that if not for altitude and range to glide to a safe landing, tress and houses would have been the option.

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  7. "engines have a failure rate of one per 3,200 flight hours for piston engines."
    "Top End

    The top end components – pistons, cylinders, valves, etc. – are considerably less robust than the bottom end. It is not unusual for top end components to fail prior to TBO. However, most of these failures can be prevented by regular inspections and use of a digital engine monitor. Most top end failures are random (there’s that word again) and do not correlate with TSMOH (time since major overhaul)."
    http://www.twinandturbine.com/statistically-speaking-will-engine-failure-year/

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    Replies
    1. The guy who was flying the plane made the youtube video about it himself and says in his own comments:

      "The aircraft ran out of fuel and this was 100% my responsibility"

      Wasn't a top end failure, he just ran it out of fuel...
      https://youtu.be/x3NTfiW17QA

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  8. 1,400 AGL when over 10 miles from the airport is just plain silly. You can see the altimeter on the youtube video. His CFI is also responsible for not quizzing him pre-departure on the amount of fuel in the tanks.

    Unless you're just in the circuit or flying with 2 people in the 150 (or some other minor reasons) you ALWAYS fill it full!

    Even without leaning, a full tank will give you around 4 hours of cruise. Leaning will put you at 3.5 gal per hour, giving you over 5 hours.

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  9. He didn’t give a good answer as to why he flew a cross country so low, guzzling fuel

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